Cloud-Native Technologies Drive Major Decarbonization of Video Production: Blackbird and Green Element


According to previous independent research by Green Element, Blackbird generates up to 91% less CO2 than cloud-based and on-premises workflows.

As more media organizations measure their carbon footprint and map out roadmaps to net zero, supply chain carbon efficiency is more important than ever, according to the latest sustainability study titled “ Decarbonising Video Production” by Blackbird in collaboration with environmental consultancy, Green Element.

This new study highlights that while huge gains have been made in the media industry due to the rise of remote production and the adoption of cloud-based solutions, broadcasters can go much further and more. quickly by integrating genuinely sustainable native technologies specifically optimized for cloud workflows.

Independent research previously conducted by Green Element has shown that using the cloud-native video editing platform, Blackbird, generates up to 91% less CO2 compared to cloud-based and on-premises workflows. Cloud-native technologies tackle the problem of carbon emissions – at the source. Content producers who embrace these technologies are leading a transition to greener ways of working. They include EVS, LiveU, Sky News Arabia and Eurovision Sport who all contributed to the study.

The article’s keyouts include that in 2020, 480 billion hours of live video streaming resulted in a loss of sea ice the size of Scotland; 90% of publishers use the cloud, but 65% move large files unnecessarily and inefficiently; Cloud-native Blackbird reduces carbon emissions by up to 91% compared to cloud-based and on-premises editing workflows thanks to its optimized architecture; and a recent breakthrough live cloud sports production led by IBC demonstrated that cloud workflows reduce energy and infrastructure requirements by 70%.

“Decarbonizing Video Production” has been endorsed by the most decorated Olympic sailor in history, Hannah Mills OBE. Hannah is also the Sustainability Ambassador for the International Olympic Committee, SailGP’s Global Spokesperson for Sustainability and Founder of Big Plastic Pledge.

Hannah Mills OBE, said: “I believe it is the responsibility of everyone, including athletes, organizers and broadcasters, to do all they can to reduce the environmental impact of sport and ensure that people can enjoy live sports more sustainably. I’m glad to see in this white paper that more and more broadcasters and content producers are embracing greener technologies and the benefits are becoming more evident. As we move towards a net zero world, cloud-native technologies like Blackbird will become increasingly important in achieving our climate goals.

Blackbird CEO Ian McDonough added, “A year ago, Blackbird took a leadership position campaigning for a reduction in highly polluting onsite workflows using cloud technology in our article ‘The Video should not cost the Earth”. Much progress has been made in this area through improved awareness and technology.

In our latest article, “Decarbonizing Video Production“, we find that despite these improvements, there is still a very high prevalence of “cloud-based” technologies that do not utilize key cloud efficiencies, in particular those of energy and carbon consumption. The rise of cloud-native solutions such as Blackbird can help reduce carbon emissions at source, removing the need for carbon capture technology or offsetting costs.


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